5 ways to start your presentation off strong

Engaging your audience is key—but how?

Engaging your audience is key—but how?

About two weeks ago, I was sitting on my couch waiting for the Yankees-Red Sox game to start. I was anxious, excited, and nervous all rolled into one. How would the Sox start the season? Would they start with a bang, blowing out the Yanks? Would they stumble? How would the season turn out? (Hopefully, better than last year.)

After the game concluded with a Red Sox victory, I got thinking about the way a presentation should start. As Dr. John Medina, author of “Brain Rules,” noted, “You’ve got seconds to grab your audience’s attention and only minutes to keep it.”

Your audience is expecting a lot from you, the presenter, so you certainly want to start your presentation off with something powerful. Otherwise, their attention will be dropping off quickly and you may lose them completely.

When crafting a presentation, be aware of how you open. Below is a list of ways to start your presentation off strong.

1. Personal story — This can be extremely powerful and memorable. I wrote about a presentation I attended that opened with a great story, tying the entire presentation together.

To read the full story, log in.
Become a Ragan Insider member to read this article and all other archived content.
Sign up today

Already a member? Log in here.
Learn more about Ragan Insider.